Kitchen Witch's 2016 Pear Recipes

Kitchen Witch’s 2016 Pear Recipes

You know I love apples - well pears as well. And pears can be substituted for apples in any recipe or combined with apples when you haven’t’ enough apples. No change in the taste!

I hope you get to try some and enjoy them!

There are ten varieties of USA Pears each with its own distinctive color, flavor, and texture. With overlapping seasons of availability, USA Pears are in season nearly year-round!

BARTLETT - When you say “Pear” most people picture a Yellow Bartlett. It has that quintessential “pear flavor,” and is a common variety found in local markets. Read on to learn more about fresh Northwest Bartletts, and find out how modern growing techniques in the Pacific Northwest produce the world’s finest Bartlett pears!

GREEN ANJOU- Commonly referred to by their French name, “d’ Anjou,” Anjou pears are the second-most recognizable pear variety in the United States. It’s the most abundant variety, which means you’ll find Green Anjou pears on produce stands in the U.S. nearly year round.

RED ANJOU - Red Anjou pears are much like their green counterparts in all respects other than color. Their shape, flavor and texture are similar, and it’s their deep, rich, maroon color that sets this variety apart, particularly as a showy pear among pears in a fruit bowl or basket.

RED BARTLETT - Called “Summer Pears” because of the time of year in which their harvest begins, Red Bartlett and other red summer pears like the Red Gold Pear, Red Silk Pear, and the Rosi Red are similar in shape and texture to Yellow Bartletts. Offering differing floral aromas and a supple sweetness, Summer Reds add a beautiful contrast of flavor and color in fruit baskets and bowls. Familiarize yourself with Red Bartlett pears here and look for them at your local market!

BOSC - There are over 3,000 known pear varieties grown around the world, but only a handful of heirloom varieties have been carefully cultivated into the juicy, delicious fruit known as Northwest-grown USA Pears. Each has a distinctive character, texture, and flavor. Try them all to find your favorites!

COMICE - Comice are among the sweetest and juiciest of all varieties of pears, and are a favorite in holiday gift boxes and baskets. Their flesh is silky soft, and can best be described as creamy in texture, abundantly full of juice, and very sweet. For many pear lovers, Comice is the pinnacle variety of pears. We’ve even seen knees buckle at first bite!

CONCORDE - The Concorde is a unique pear variety that combines the best features of the Conference and Comice pears from which it is derived. It is ideal for any cooking or baking use, as well as for fresh eating. Firm texture and vanilla-sweetness combine with very little browning when cut or sliced, resulting in an excellent all-purpose pear.

FORELLE - For what they lack in size, Forelle pears make up in sweet flavor and beautiful appearance. Known as a great “snacking” pear, Forelles are as wonderful to eat as they are beautiful to see on display!

SECKEL - “Good things often come in small packages.” In the case of the diminutive Seckel, this could not be more truthful. The smallest of all commercially grown pears, Seckels are exceptionally sweet. So sweet in fact, that the bite-size morsels are sometimes called “sugar pears.”

STRAKRIMSON - Starkrimson pears are named for their brilliant crimson red color and feature a thick, stocky stem. The Starkrimson is a mild, sweet pear with a subtle floral aroma. It is very juicy when ripe and has a pleasant, smooth texture, making it perfect for snacking, salads, or any fresh use that shows off the brilliance of its skin.

Pear Buñuelos
Buñuelos are similar to what we know as a fritter. These delicious Pear Buñuelos incorporate the naturally sweet flavor Forelle pear making it the perfect ending to any meal.

4 Forelle pears
⅔ cups flour
1 tablespoon baking soda
¼ tablespoon salt
1 pinch pepper
3 tablespoons milk
lime (the juice)

In a bowl place the flour, baking soda, salt, pepper, egg and milk; mix well until you have a smooth and slightly thick texture with no lumps; set aside in the refrigerator.
Dice the pears and soak them in lime juice to prevent oxidation. Heat the oil in a pan. In the meantime, batter the pear pieces in the mix; fry them until they get a golden color. Place them in absorbent paper to remove excess oil. Serve immediately with honey.

Pear Granola Cookies
Cookies with a double dose of fiber… fresh pears and granola! The addition of fresh pears adds natural moisture to this soft and chewy cookie.

2 fresh, ripe Anjou or Bosc USA Pears
¾ cup shortening
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups granola
½ cup raisins

Core and finely chop pears to equal 1 ½ cups. Cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Blend in egg and vanilla. Stir in pears. Combine flour, baking soda, and cinnamon; add to creamed mixture and mix until smooth. Stir in granola and raisins. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on racks.

Pear Granita with Pistachio Biscotti
1 ½ pounds (about 3) ripe Comice USA Pears
8 cardamom pods, toasted and crushed
1 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
½ teaspoon salt
1 lemon, juiced (about 3 tablespoons)

1 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 lemons
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups pistachios, coarsely chopped
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon almond extract

Pomegranate seeds
Fresh herbs, like mint, basil, or lemon verbena

For granita: Peel, core, and dice the pears into 1-inch cubes. Lightly toast the cardamom pods in a small sauté pan over medium low heat until they smell slightly toasty, about 2 minutes. Cool and lightly crush the outer shells.
In a saucepan, combine water, sugar, cardamom pods, vanilla bean seeds and pod, and salt. Bring the mixture to a boil and remove from heat. Let syrup cool and infuse at least 30 minutes.
Strain the syrup into a small saucepan, add pears and lemon juice and simmer for 10 to 12 minutes, until soft and translucent. Remove the pan from the heat and let the pears cool in the syrup.
When cool, puree the pears and syrup in a blender. Pour the puree into a large bowl, add 3 cups of water, stir well, and allow the mixture to sit overnight in the refrigerator.
Strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a 9 x 13-inch pan. Freeze 30 to 45 minutes, then use a fork to scrape the ice crystals that have formed around the edges of the pan into the middle. Repeat this step every 30 minutes or so until the mixture resembles shaved ice. It should take a few hours, scraping about four times.
Cover with foil until ready to serve.

For biscotti: Make the biscotti between scrapings. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place the sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer or a medium size mixing bowl. Zest the 2 lemons into the sugar. Use your fingers to rub the zest with the sugar; this brings out the citrus oil and coats the sugar.
Add the flour, baking powder, salt, and pistachios to the bowl. Mix to incorporate using the paddle attachment on the mixer or your hands. Whisk the eggs, yolk, vanilla, and almond extract together. Add to the dry ingredients and mix on low speed or continue mixing with your hands. The mixture will seem dry at first, but eventually comes together. When that happens, remove the dough from the bowl and form it into a 12-inch by 2 ½-inch wide log on a piece of parchment paper.
Place the biscotti log on a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes total, rotating the pan after 15 minutes. It will spread considerably. Remove the pan from the oven and reduce the temperature to 250 degrees.
Once the log has cooled, use a serrated knife to slice it on a slight angle or, for longer biscotti, on a greater angle. Place the slices back on the baking sheet and return to the oven for 20 minutes or so. Rotate the pan after 10 minutes. The second time in the oven dries the cookies and makes them crunchy. Cool to room temperature before storing in an airtight container.
Before serving, put martini glasses or wine glasses in the freezer for a few hours. Scrape several spoonfuls of granita into the glass and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds. Top with several more spoonfuls of granita and top with additional seeds and fresh herb leaves. Serve biscotti on the side.
yield: Makes 1 quart granita and 2 dozen biscotti

Marzipan Pear Hand Pies
Buttery, flaky pie crust and a filling of sweet, aromatic pears and bits of marzipan in the palm of your hand.

1 Green Bartlett pear, ripe but firm, cut into 1/4-inch dice
4 ounces almond paste or marzipan, cut into 1/4-inch dice (tossed with a sprinkling of sugar to prevent sticking)
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 batch of your favorite pie crust (enough for a double crust pie). I personally like Martha's Pate Brisee recipe.
1 large egg
1 tablespoon cream
raw or turbinado sugar, for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F; arrange oven racks in top third and bottom third of oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
Combine diced pear and marzipan in a bowl. Toss with lemon juice, sugar, and almond extract.
Roll out pie crust slightly thinner than if you were making a typical pie. Cut into 3-inch rounds using a circle cutter or by tracing the rim of a drinking glass. Cut as many rounds as you can, then gather scraps into a ball and roll out again to get more rounds (these 'seconds' won't be quite as flaky as the first batch but you don't want to waste it nonetheless). Arrange half of rounds on prepared baking sheets, leaving 1-2 inches of space between them.
In a small bowl, whisk together egg and cream until smooth. Brush egg wash in a 1/2-inch ring around the edges of rounds using a pastry brush.
Spoon heaping teaspoonfuls of diced pear mixture into the center of each round. Gently lay a second round on top of filling, stretching slightly to match up edges. Press the tines of a fork around the edge to seal. Repeat with remaining rounds. If desired, cut decorative flowers or other shapes, adhering them to the tops of the pies with a dab of egg wash.
Place baking sheets in freezer for 5 to 10 minutes (this will prevent the crust and decorations from losing their shape).
Remove from freezer and brush tops with a thin layer of egg wash. Sprinkle with turbinado sugar. With a small pairing knife, make a few small slits in the tops of the pies to allow the steam to vent.
Bake pies at 425 degrees for 15 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Rotate baking sheets top to bottom. Bake for 10 more minutes or until crusts are puffed and deep golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes before serving warm.

Pear and Pecan Torte
“Made with ground nuts in place of all or some of the flour, a torte is a wonderfully unique dessert. This recipe is based on a classic southern pecan torte that uses a different fall tree fruit (which shall remain nameless), but I absolutely adore my version which uses pears. The cake is incredibly light thanks to the long whipping time of the eggs and sugar, and the ground pecans give this dessert a perfect crumb. The lightness of this dessert allows the flavors of pears and vanilla to really come through. I am officially in love with this cake, and I suspect it will become a favorite of yours, too!”
Butter and flour for dusting pan
2 cups pecan halves
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2 firm-ripe USA Pears, such as Green Anjou or Comice small dice
Whipped cream for serving

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly butter a 10-inch cake pan and dust with flour.
Pick through the pecans and pull out 8 perfect halves for garnish and set aside. Place the remaining pecans in a food processor and pulse multiple times until you have a mixture that looks just slightly coarser than flour. Set aside. Using a stand mixer or hand mixer, whip the eggs on medium-high speed until very light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Continue to whip the eggs and add the sugar, about 2 tablespoons at a time, allowing it to become well incorporated after each addition. After several minutes the mixture should be very voluminous and pale. Add the vanilla and whip to combine.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Sift the dry mixture into the egg and sugar mixture and fold them gently together with a spatula, being careful not to over-mix. Next, chop the pears into a small dice—¼-inch or smaller. Add all of the chopped pears and the pecan meal to the batter, once again folding to combine without over-mixing.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 40-45 minutes. When the torte is done, the edges will have pulled away from the pan. Cool the torte for at least 30 minutes before serving. Carefully turn the cake out of the pan and turn it right-side up again. Slice into 8 or more pieces and serve with a large spoonful of whipped cream and a perfect pecan half.
Store any extra torte in the refrigerator – it is just as delicious served cold.

Bosc Pear and Roasted Hazelnut Tart
A tart makes such a pretty presentation on a dessert table, especially this tart, which has slices of caramelized pears on top. The skin of a Bosc pear is autumn-hued in lovely shades of brown and gold, which is precisely why the pears are left unpeeled. The tart can be made in stages: the tart shell can be prepared in advance and frozen, and the filling can be made a day ahead. This makes assembly and baking a breeze.
Tart Crust
¼ cup finely ground hazelnuts (see Cook’s Note)
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
4 tablespoons ice-cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
¼ cup ice-cold solid vegetable shortening
3 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon ice water
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
½ cup sugar
1 large egg yolk
1 large egg
1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
½ cup finely ground hazelnuts (see Cook’s Note)
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3 firm but ripe Bosc USA Pears
2 tablespoons pear brandy, kirsch, or cognac
1 ½ tablespoons sugar

For crust: Combine the hazelnuts, flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Add the butter and shortening and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the sour cream and water, and process for a few seconds, just until a ball of dough begins to form. Do not overprocess. (To make the dough by hand, place the dry ingredients in a large bowl, and use a pastry blender to cut the butter and shortening into the flour mixture. Add the sour cream and ice water, and mix just until it comes together and forms a mass.) Transfer the dough to a floured work surface, gathering all the loose bits, and form into a disk about 1 inch thick. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Have ready a 10-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough into a circle about 12 inches in diameter. Dust the work surface and dough with a little more flour, as necessary, to keep the dough from sticking. Roll the dough around the rolling pin, lift it over the tart pan, and unroll the dough over the pan. Adjust to center the dough, then press it into place. Trim the overhang to half an inch and fold in to reinforce the side. Freeze the tart shell for 20 minutes. (The tart shell can be made up to this point and frozen for up to 1 month.)
Line the tart shell with foil and fill with dried beans, rice, or pie weights. Bake just until the side of the pastry begins to color, about 20 minutes. Remove the weights and foil, and bake until the base of the shell is golden, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool. Reduce oven temperature to 400 degrees.
For filling: Cream the butter and sugar in a food processor fitted with the metal blade, stopping the machine once or twice to scrape down the sides of the work bowl. Add the egg yolk, egg, and heavy cream, and process to blend thoroughly. Scatter the ground nuts and flour over the butter mixture, and process just until blended. Refrigerate while preparing the pears. Halve and core them and cut vertically into ⅛-inch slices.
To assemble: Spread the cream filling evenly over the bottom of the prepared tart shell. Arrange the pears over the filling in overlapping concentric circles, starting from the outside edge and working toward the center. Brush the pears with the pear brandy. Sprinkle the 1 ½ tablespoons of sugar over the top.
Bake the tart in the center of the oven until the pastry is brown and the pears begin to caramelize, about 45 minutes. Let cool on a rack. When ready to serve, center one hand under the bottom of the tart pan and slip off the rim with the other hand. Set the tart on a round serving plate and cut into wedges.
Cook’s Note
Prepare the ground hazelnuts for both the tart shell and filling at the same time. Spread 1 cup of hazelnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and roast them in a preheated 350 degree oven until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Rub the nuts together in a terry kitchen towel to remove the skins. Place them in a food processor fitted with a metal blade and process until finely ground. Measure and set aside ¼ cup for the tart shell, and ½ cup for the filling.

Simple Dehydrated Pear Slices
A really delicious and easy way to preserve your pear harvest for up to 30 days or longer if frozen. And they’re beautiful to look at too.
2 pounds firm, not overripe pears, sliced ¼-inch thick
4 cups water
¼ cup lemon juice

Preheat oven to 160°F. Mix lemon juice and 4 cups of water. Soak pear slices for 10 minutes in lemon water, remove and place on paper towels to absorb water. Arrange pear slices on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet in a single layer.
Place pears in a LOW oven for 3 hours and check for desired doneness. When ready, remove pears from the oven and allow them to cool. Put in airtight containers and store.
Dehydrated pears will last 30 days, or longer if frozen - I do not freeze them - I do not freeze any dried foods - to me they are not the same and besides - moisture sets in. You would have to eat them immediately.

Savory Pear and Gruyere Tart

2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 lrg red onion, cut into 1/4-inch-thick half moon slices
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 sheet frozen puff pastry dough (about 9 ounces), thawed according to package directions
All purpose flour for rolling out the dough
1 cup grated Gruyere cheese (2 1/2 ounces)
2 gently packed cups arugula or baby kale
2 firm Anjou pears that are just beginning to ripen (about 1 pound)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Set a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the olive oil and swirl in the pan. Add the onion, rosemary and a generous pinch of salt. Cook the onion, stirring from time to time, until the slices are tender brown, and caramelized, about 10 minutes.
While the onion cooks prepare the dough. Lightly flour your work surface, and use a rolling pin to roll out the dough to an 11 x 15-inch rectangle. Transfer the dough to the baking sheet. Moisten the perimeter of the dough with a little water using the tip of your finger. Fold the edge of the dough over to form a 3/4-inch wide border.
Lay the cooked onion slices over the surface of the tart, within the border. Scatter the cheese over the onion and lay the arugula on top.
Cut each pear off of it’s core in 4 cuts. Lay the pear pieces flesh-side down on a cutting board and cut into thin slices (1/16-inch). Arrange the slices in three rows down the length of the tart, overlapping about a 1/4-inch. Add a small pinch of salt over the pears and put in the oven to bake.
Bake the tart until the pastry is golden brown all over, 20 to 25 minutes. Peek in the oven once or twice during baking. If a section of dough puffs up notably, poke it with the tip of a knife to deflate.
Remove from oven, let cool for a few minutes, and serve.
Makes 10-12 servings as an appetizer.

No Bake Pear Cheesecake

1 1/2 cups crushed gingersnap cookies
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted, slightly cooled
12 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/3 cup sour cream or creme fraiche
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, powdered sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 largeUSA Pears Starkrimson variety, medium chop
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1 cinnamon stick, optional

Pulse gingersnap cookies in a food processor until ground. Combine with melted butter until moistened. Divide among four serving containers* and press cookie crumbs to the bottom to form the crust. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add sour cream and mix until incorporated. Scrape down bowl as needed to ensure thorough mixing. Add confectioners’s sugar and heavy cream. Mix on low speed until mixture is smooth.
Divide cheesecake batter among prepared serving containers. Use a mini offset spatula, or the back of a spoon, to level cheesecake batter. Cover and store in fridge for at least 30 minutes, up to overnight.
Meanwhile, place chopped pears in a heavy bottomed sauce pot. Add water, brown sugar, and optional cinnamon stick. Set over medium heat and cook until sugar has melted. Stir often to ensure sugar does not burn at the bottom of the pot. Once sugar has melted, remove from heat. Set aside until cheesecake is chilled.
Spoon pears and syrup over chilled cheesecakes. Serve immediately.

*Notes: I used 12.5 oz glass jars.

Bosc Pear and Cranberry Relish

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons finely diced shallots
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
12 oz fresh cranberries
zest of 1 orange
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 large USA Pear, the Bosc variety

Heat the olive oil in a medium sized skillet. Sauté shallots for 1-2 minutes or until soft. Stir in the salt, brown sugar and cranberries. Cook on low heat 1-2 minutes more or until the sugar starts to melt. Remove from the heat and stir in the orange juice and zest.
Transfer to a food processor and pulse 2-3 times until the mixture is finely diced.
Chop the pear into small chunks and stir into the cranberry mixture. Serve with turkey and stuffing or as a snack with crackers and cream cheese.

Crispy Potato Latkes with Spiced Pear Compote
For Latkes:
2 large russet potatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled and grated
1/4 large onion
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons matzo meal or flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
vegetable oil, for cooking

For Pear Compote:
1 Green Bartlett pear, ripe but firm, cored and cut into 3/8-inch dice
1 Green Anjou pear, ripe but firm, cored and cut into 3/8-inch dice
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamon

Turn oven on to lowest setting (170 degrees typically), and place a baking sheet inside.
Squeeze as much moisture out of the grated potatoes as possible (wring it out in a clean kitchen towel or spin it in a paper-towel lined salad spinner).
Combine grated potato, onion, egg, matzo meal, salt and pepper in a large bowl, folding with a fork until evenly moistened.
Heat a large skillet (or two skillets if you want to speed up the cooking process) over medium heat. When hot, add a 1/4-inch deep layer of oil to the pan.
When the oil is shimmery and a test piece of potato sputters and sizzles, the oil is ready. If it's too hot and starts to smoke, reduce the heat slightly.
Spoon a heaping tablespoon of potato into the hot skillet, spreading out to a 3-inch round. You should be able to cook about 3-4 latkes at a time depending on the size of your pan, but don't overcrowd the skillet.
Cook for 3-4 minutes per side or until golden brown, then flip and cook for another 3-4 minutes more. Remove from oil with a slotted spatula, letting any excess oil drain off. Place on baking sheet in the oven to keep warm while you cook the remaining pancakes.
To prepare compote, toss diced pears with lemon juice immediately after cutting to prevent browning. Set a saucepan over medium heat and add pears along with brown sugar, cinnamon, and cardamon. Gently simmer for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until pears are just starting to soften. Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl for serving.

Bartlett Pear Fritters with Sweet Lemon Ricotta
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 to 1 cup soda water
3 firm, ripe Bartlett pears, washed and cut into eights
Lemon Ricotta
2/3 cup fresh ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons lemon marmalade
2 teaspoons honey

Measure the flour, baking powder and a pinch each of salt and freshly ground pepper into a bowl. Stir with a fork to combine before adding 3/4 cup soda. Whisk until smooth, adding more soda water to reach desired consistency, just thick enough to coat and stick to the pears. The batter should be the proper consistency to drop from a spoon. Set aside and let rest for 1 hour.
While the batter rests, heat the oil in a deep fryer or heavy-bottomed pot with high sides to 375°F. As the oil heats, peel, core and halve the pears. Cut each half into 4 wedges and set aside while you make the ricotta dip.
In a small bowl, whisk together the ricotta cheese with the marmalade and honey.
Coat the pears with the batter, let the excess drip off and fry a few at a time until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the fritters to a paper towel to soak up any excess oil and add 4 to a plate with a spoonful of ricotta. Dust the fritters with powdered sugar if desired. Serve immediately.

Poached Pears in Chocolate Sauce with Walnuts

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup lightly packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups finely shredded carrot (about 2 medium carrots)
1 ½ cups finely diced pear (from about 2 ripe USA Pears, such as Bartlett)
⅔ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
½ cup walnuts, roughly chopped
¾ cup neutral-flavored oil, such as canola or safflower
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons demerara sugar, for sprinkling on top (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, soda, and salt, and whisk to combine. Add the carrot, pear, coconut, and walnuts to the flour mixture and stir gently to coat the fruit and vegetables. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the oil, eggs, and vanilla. Add the liquid mixture to the dry and stir gently until no dry pockets of flour remain. Line a muffin tin with papers and fill each cup ¾ full with the batter. Sprinkle each muffin with a little demerara sugar. Transfer to the preheated oven and bake the muffins for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Pear Puree
For Simple Fresh Pear Puree
1 USA Pear
Dash of lemon juice

Peel and core a ripe USA Pear of your choice. Cut into chunks and puree in a food processor or blender until smooth. If desired, the skin may be left on the pear, which will provide vibrant flecks of color in your fresh puree. A splash of lemon juice will help prevent your puree from browning.

Poached Pear Purees
Spice up purees (literally) by poaching your fresh USA Pears in a flavorful poaching liquid before pureeing. Pears can be poached in red and white wine, fruit juice, beer, sake, coconut milk, and more. You can even add some spice to your poaching liquid, like cloves, cinnamon, salt, black pepper, vanilla bean, orange zest, nutmeg, cardamom… you get the picture!

Peel pears, leaving stem and core intact. Heat poaching liquid over medium until it starts to simmer. Reduce heat to low and continue simmering while fully immersing pears into the poaching liquid. Simmer until pears are soft and easily pierced with a fork, 5 – 15 minutes depending on the size of the pear. Remove pears from liquid and let cool. Core pears, remove stems, cut into chunks, and puree in a food processor or blender until smooth.

Pear and Blueberry Pie Bars
1 ½ cups flour
½ cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) cold, unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1 teaspoon vanilla

3 slightly underripe USA Pears, such as Bosc or Bartlett, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
Juice of ½ a lemon
1 pound blueberries

Streusel Topping
¾ cup flour
½ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
⅔ cup old-fashioned oats

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9×13 baking dish by lining it with parchment paper (this will make the bars much easier to remove from the pan later). Combine all of the crust ingredients in a food processor and pulse about 10 times until the mixture has a mealy texture. Scatter the meal in an even layer across the bottom of the pan and then press it firmly into place to form the crust. Dock the crust with a fork all over to prevent rising, and place in the oven to bake for 10 minutes.

While the crust is baking, peel and slice the pears and toss them very gently with the lemon juice. When the crust comes out of the oven, allow it to cool slightly while you prepare the streusel topping. For the streusel, combine all of the ingredients except the oats in a food processor and pulse about 10 times. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and add the oats, thoroughly combining them into the mixture using your hands. Transfer the streusel topping to the refrigerator to chill.

While the streusel chills, assemble the filling by first laying the pear slices out on top of the crust in a single layer. They may overlap slightly if necessary. Next, scatter the blueberries over the pears evenly. Lastly, crumble the chilled streusel over the top of the fruit. Transfer to the oven and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the blueberries are bubbling and the streusel has lightly browned.

Allow the bars to cool for at least 30 minutes before carefully removing them from the pan. For best results, cool the bars fully before slicing into squares (but of course you’ll want to try a few while they’re still warm!). Store in the refrigerator.

Spice-Roasted Chicken and Pears
One 3.5 – 4 pound roasting chicken, cut into 8 pieces
1 tablespoon whole fennel seeds
6 whole cloves
2 cinnamon sticks, broken in half
4 – 8 dried Thai bird chiles, crushed (or substitute a few pinches of chili flakes)
2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1 teaspoon coarse salt
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 firm ripe USA Pears, such as Red Anjou or Bartlett, cut into 8 – 10 slices each

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the cut up chicken into a large bowl, patting it dry with paper towels if necessary. In a small bowl, combine the spices, chiles, ginger, lemon, sugar and salt and mix to combine. Pour the oil over the chicken and toss to coat. Add the spice mixture and the pear slices and mix gently to distribute. Spread the chicken and pear mixture out into a 9 x 13 baking dish in a single layer, placing the chicken pieces skin-side up. Roast the chicken for 30 minutes at 400 degrees, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees and cook for an additional 20 – 30 minutes or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Serve immediately with the pear slices, pan juices, and spices spooned over the top.

Savory-and-Sweet Pear Ham and Gruyere Strata
Butter for greasing pan
2 ½ cups half and half
6 large eggs
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon orange zest (from about half an orange)
½ teaspoon fresh thyme, roughly chopped
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
10 loose cups good-quality, artisan bread, cut into 1 ½ inch cubes (from about one small loaf)
⅓ pound best quality ham, thinly sliced
2 ripe USA Pears, such as Red or Green Bartlett, cut into large cubes
1 cup (loose) grated gruyere cheese (or vintage sharp cheddar)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and lightly butter a 9 x 13 baking dish or large casserole. In a large bowl combine the half and half, eggs, salt, orange zest, thyme, and maple syrup and whisk to combine thoroughly. Add the bread cubes (be sure not to use more than 10 cups or the strata will be too dry) and toss to combine. Next, add the ham (tearing into smaller pieces if necessary), the pears, and about half of the cheese. Toss once again to evenly distribute the ingredients. Transfer the mixture and all of its liquid to the prepared baking dish and sprinkle with the remaining cheese (at this point the strata may be covered and refrigerated overnight). Bake the strata for 45-50 minutes, or until nicely browned and very hot in the middle. If baking the strata directly from the refrigerator, add 15-20 minutes to its cooking time, covering it loosely with foil for the additional time to prevent over-browning.

Pear Sausage and Fontina Calzones

1 ball store-bought pizza dough (16 ounces)
Flour for dusting
8 ounces bulk or 2 link sausages, any flavor, cooked if raw, and cut into bite-sized pieces (I used mild Italian pork sausage)
8 ounces Fontina cheese, shredded
1 ripe USA Pear, such as Bosc or Green Anjou, large dice

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Divide the dough into four equal portions and shape each portion back into a round. Set the dough aside on the counter to warm slightly, covered with plastic wrap. Cook your sausage if you purchased it raw. If bulk, divide the sausage into bite-sized balls and fry in a little olive oil. If you chose links, simmer the links in water for 5 minutes until firm, rinse under cool water, and slice. Gather all of your ingredients to fill the calzones: sausage, shredded cheese, diced pears, and a small bowl of water for sealing the calzones.

Dust a cutting board lightly with flour and roll out one ball of dough into an approximately 8-inch circle. Fill with one-quarter of your filling ingredients, placing them all in one half of the circle. Dip your fingers in the bowl of water and carefully dot water along half of the dough’s edge. Gently fold the calzone in half and seal the ingredients inside. For an extra-protective seal, dot water along the top of the semi-circle and fold the dough back onto itself, pressing it with the tines of a fork or pinching into a decorative, scalloped edge. Carefully transfer the calzone to a lightly oiled sheet pan. Follow the same directions for the other calzones, being sure to leave 2 inches of space between each calzone on the sheet pan. Bake for 20-24 minutes, or until lightly browned. Serve the calzones while still warm from the oven.

Warm Gorgonzola Turnovers with Caramelized Pears
12 6 x 6-inch squares of puff pastry
1 egg, beaten
6 ounces crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
6 Bosc, Concorde, Anjou, or other ripe USA Pears
6 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
Fresh thyme sprigs or basil for garnish

Place pastry squares on a parchment-lined baking sheet and brush edges of pastry with egg. Place 2 tablespoons Gorgonzola in center of each square. Fold opposing corners of the pastry to the center creating a smaller square; pinch to seal and brush top with egg. Refrigerate until ready to bake. Bake at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes or until puffed and golden brown.

Peel, core, and quarter or halve pears. Leaving stem end intact, slice into ¼-inch wedges and gently fan slices. While pastries are baking, heat butter, sugar, salt, and pepper in a medium-size skillet. Add pears and cook over medium-low heat for 10–15 minutes, turning once until tender and lightly caramelized. (Alternatively, melt butter and gently combine with pears, sugar, salt, and pepper; bake pears on pan with pastries. Depending on ripeness of pears, they may take longer or shorter time to bake than pastries.)

To serve, place a warm pastry on plate and accompany with half a warm caramelized pear. Garnish with herbs if desired.

Walnut Crepes with Wild Blueberries and Pears

2 ripe Anjou USA Pears, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 pint frozen wild blueberries
½ cup toasted California walnut pieces

For crêpes: In a high speed blender, combine the eggs, flour, soy milk, salt, and melted butter. Blend until smooth. The batter should be the consistency of heavy cream. If it is too thick, add milk. Stir in the walnuts.

Heat an 8 to 10-inch non-stick pan or crêpe pan over medium heat and coat very lightly with non-stick spray. Pour about 3 tablespoons of the crêpe batter in the pan and swirl pan to coat the bottom evenly. Cook until golden then flip and cook the second side for one more minute. Set aside on a parchment-lined plate. Repeat with remaining crêpes, stacking them one on top of another, until batter is used.

For cream: In a medium bowl, combine the cream, agave nectar, orange zest, and lemon zest. Split the vanilla bean from top to bottom and use the back of a knife (or your thumb) to scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the bowl; whip to form medium peaks.

For sauce: In a medium saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a boil over medium heat; add the agave and stir to dissolve. Lower the heat to a simmer; add the pears and poach until tender. Turn on the heat and add the wild blueberries. Set aside to cool.

To serve: Spread a thin layer of the soy cream mixture onto one quarter of a crêpe. Sprinkle with about a tablespoon of the toasted walnuts. Fold the crêpe in half and then in half again, creating a triangular shaped packet. Spoon the sauce over the crêpes. Garnish with walnut halves and serve immediately.

USA Pear Slush
1 cup cored, pared, and coarsely chopped USA Pear, any variety
¼ cup orange juice
2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lime or lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
1 cup crushed ice

Place all ingredients in blender container; blend for 45–60 seconds or until smooth. Pour into chilled glass and serve.

Starkrimson Pear Upside Down Cake
The rich flavors of the brown sugar and the fresh pears blend beautifully in this decadent cinnamon cake. Serve with coffee.

10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, divided
½ cup brown sugar
4 Starkrimson USA Pears, peeled, cored, and wedged
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 ½ cups flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup milk
Walnut to garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease the bottom and sides of a round pan with 2 tablespoons of butter. Sprinkle with brown sugar.
Brush pear wedges with lemon juice and arrange in the bottom of pan.Combine flour with baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
Using an electric mixer, beat remaining butter with sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in eggs and vanilla. Add flour mixture and milk in alternating order slowly, beating over low speed after each addition. Spoon batter evenly over pears in pan.
Bake for 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool for 30 minutes before inverting over serving platter. Decorate with walnuts and serve.

Spiced Pear Syrup
Pear Juice
6 Bartlett USA Pears (about 2 pounds)
1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 ¼ cups pear juice
1 ½ cups sugar
¼ cup light corn syrup
⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Dash ground cloves

For juice: Core and slice pears; mash with lemon juice. Heat for 5 minutes or until juices start flowing. Pour through fine sieve. For cleaner syrup, sieve twice.
For syrup: Combine pear juice, sugar, corn syrup, and spices in 3-quart saucepan. Bring to boil; stir until sugar dissolves. Boil hard for exactly 1 minute. Remove from heat; skim off foam. Syrup may be frozen or canned.
yield: Makes 1 pint

To freeze: Pour cooled syrup in freezer containers; allow ¾ to 1-inch head space. Freeze.

To can: Ladle into clean hot canning jars to within ⅛-inch of tops. Seal according to manufacturer’s directions. Place jars on rack in canner. Process 5 minutes in boiling water bath with boiling water two inches above jar tops. Remove jars from canner. Place on thick cloth or wire racks. Cool away from drafts. After 12 hours test lids for proper seal; remove rings from sealed jars.

Sauteed Bosc Pears

2 tablespoons butter
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
6 Bosc USA Pears, peeled, cored, and quartered
Juice of ½ lemon (about 3 tablespoons)
1 ½ cup nonfat vanilla yogurt or frozen yogurt
½ cup chopped, toasted California walnuts

To prepare pears, melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in spices and cook for 30 seconds or until aromatic. Add pears and cook for 15 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently. Stir in lemon juice.
Serve with nonfat vanilla yogurt or frozen yogurt and top with walnuts.

Red Anjou Pear Pie

Pie Dough
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
7 ounces (14 tablespoons) very cold butter cut in small pieces
⅓ cup sour cream (yogurt or buttermilk can be substituted)
½ cup ice water

4 firm, ripe Red Anjou USA Pears, cored and coarsely chopped
½ lemon, juiced
⅓ cup granulated sugar
⅓ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ cup diced dried apricots
½ cup finely chopped pecans
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces

For dough: Put the flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Combine on low speed.
Add the butter pieces all at once and let the mixer run on medium low speed until they are pea-sized and evenly dispersed. Add the sour cream and mix for several rotations or until combined, about 7 seconds.
Add half of the ice water and combine on low for several seconds before adding the additional water one tablespoon at a time until the dough begins to come together. If more water is necessary, add it one teaspoon at a time. The dough should be moist enough to stick together when pressed between your fingers. (It will be soft and malleable and will gather together easily—be careful not to overwork it.)
Gather the dough together into a disk and refrigerate for at least two hours before rolling.
yield: Makes two 10-inch single crusts or one double crust

For filling: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Gently toss diced pears with lemon juice. Mix together sugar, flour, cinnamon, apricots, and pecans. Gently mix together pears and dry ingredients. Pour into bottom pie crust. Dot top of pear mixture with butter pieces.
Top either with a full crust, or cut top crust into lattice. Crimp crust edges. If using a top crust, cut several slits to vent the pie. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool on rack.

Perfect Pear Jam

3 pounds Bartlett, Bosc, Comice, or Anjou USA Pears, ripe and slightly under-ripe
1 fresh lemon, zested and juiced
4 cups white sugar

If preferred, peel pears. Cut pears lengthwise into quarters and remove cores and stem ends. Chop pears into chunks, bigger for chunky jam, smaller for a smooth batch.
Combine pears, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a large bowl. Stir well to combine and cover. Let the mixture sit on the counter at least one hour, but preferably 8 hours, or overnight.
After letting the mixture sit, stir well, scraping any sugar that may have collected on the bottom of the bowl. Place pear mixture in a heavy-bottomed non-reactive pan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the fruit from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Stir the fruit gently while cooking to reduce foaming.
After about 10 minutes the fruit should be soft. Mash the pear chunks with a potato masher if you want smaller pieces, or mash completely for a smooth jam. Boil for 5-15 more minutes, stirring, until the jam either thickens to your liking or until it reaches 220 degrees on a candy thermometer.
Once desired thickness has been achieved, remove the preserving pan from the heat and spoon mixture immediately into hot sterilized jars, leaving ¼-inch headspace for canning, or 1 inch if you plan to freeze. Look for any bubbles and use a plastic knife to pop them.
At this point you can either cover jars with tight-fitting lids and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 months or in the freezer for up to 6 months, or you can process by following the next steps: Wipe rims of jars spotlessly clean and cover with sealing lids. Screw bands on finger-tight. Place jars on rack in boiling water bath canner, ensuring that tops of jars are completely submerged in hot water. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.
Remove jars from canner using jar-lifter tongs and gently set aside to cool on a kitchen towel in a draft-free place. Let rest for 24 hours, then check for a proper seal before storing.

Pear-Stuffed French Toast

4 slices cinnamon swirl bread, 1 inch thick
1 ripe Comice USA Pear
2 eggs
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon unsalted butter
Maple syrup or powdered sugar

Using a sharp bread knife, cut a pocket in one end of each slice of bread. The pocket should leave a border of about one inch from the sides of the bread.
Peel the pears, cut in half and core them. Working over bowl, use a knife or the vegetable peeler to cut the pear into very thin strips. Spread open the pocket in the bread and fill it with pear slices using a butter knife.
Transfer stuffed bread to a baking dish large enough to hold all the slices in a single layer. In a medium bowl, beat together milk and eggs and pour over the bread. After 5 minutes, flip the bread and using a fork, prick the bread to help it absorb the liquid. Repeat. Allow the bread to absorb all the liquid, about 15 minutes.
Melt butter on non-stick griddle or skillet over medium heat. Fry the French toast in two batches until golden brown and cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Serve with maple syrup or dust with powdered sugar.

Pear Carrot Cranberry Muffins

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 large firm, ripe USA Pear (about 1-¼ cup grated)
1-¾ cups grated carrots
½ cup dried cranberries
½ cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped (optional)
½ cup unsweetened coconut
⅔ cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard-size 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners or lightly grease it, then dust with flour.
Combine all-purpose and whole wheat flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Stir well or sift together if lumpy.
Measure grated pear and carrots into another bowl and add cranberries, nuts, if using, and coconut.
Whisk oil, eggs and vanilla together until slightly lighter in color.
Add wet ingredients to dry, folding in gently until they are completely moistened and well distributed. Scoop batter into muffin liners.
Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until slightly darker around the edges.

Pear Walnut Cake

2 fresh Bartlett USA Pears, cored
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ cup shortening
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup milk
½ cup chopped walnuts (pecans may be substituted)
Broiled Maple Topping
1/4 cup butter or margarine
½ cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 cup flaked coconut
½ cup chopped nuts

For cake: Finely chop pears to equal 1 ½ cups. Cream sugar and shortening until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla; beat until mixture is well blended. Combine flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and baking soda; add to mixture alternately with milk. Stir in chopped pears and nuts. Turn into greased 12 x 8 x 2-inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted near center comes out clean. Spread Broiled Maple Topping over warm cake. Broil 2 to 3 minutes (watching carefully) or until bubbly.

For topping: Melt butter in small saucepan. Remove from heat. Stir in brown sugar, milk, maple syrup, flaked coconut, and chopped nuts. (yield: Makes about 1 ½ cups)

Pear Orange Marmalade
1 orange
1 ½ cups water
3 cups sugar
3 pounds firm, ripe Bartlett USA Pears, cored, peeled, and sliced
3 tablespoons lemon juice

Quarter and seed orange; slice very thinly. Combine water and sugar, heat until sugar is dissolved. Add pears, orange, and lemon juice. Boil rapidly, stirring constantly until mixture is 9 degrees above the boiling point of water and is very thick. Skim. Ladle into clean hot half pint canning jars to within ⅛-inch of tops. Seal according to jar manufacturer’s directions.
Place jars on rack in canner. Process 5 minutes in boiling water bath with boiling water 2 inches above jar tops. Remove jars from canner. Place on thick cloth or wire rack; cool away from drafts. After 12 hours, test lids for proper seal; remove rings from sealed jars.
yield: Makes 4 or 5 half pints

Pear Oat and Almond Cake

10 tablespoons butter, melted, plus more for greasing the pan
2 eggs
4 ripe USA Pears, such as Anjou, Bartlett, or Red Bartlett, medium dice
1 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ teaspoons pure almond extract
1 ¼ cups old-fashioned oats, ground in a blender until fine
1 cup unbleached flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 10-inch round glass or ceramic baking dish with butter.
Melt the butter in a small saucepan and set aside to cool slightly. In a large bowl, beat the eggs until well combined. Add the diced pears, sugar, and almond extract. Lastly, pour in the melted butter and combine the ingredients gently with a spatula.
In a medium bowl, add the ground oats, flour, cinnamon, cloves, soda, and salt, and whisk until well combined. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, and fold together until just moistened using a spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Pear Jelly Candies
1 pound ripe Bartlett, Anjou, or Bosc USA Pears
1 cup Chardonnay (or water), divided into ½ cup portions
2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
1 cup granulated sugar, plus more for dusting

Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper and grease with oil or non-stick spray. Set aside.
Pour ½ cup of wine (or water) into a heavy-bottomed saucepan. If using a food processor for this recipe, peel pears, using vegetable peeler, then quarter, cut out cores, and add to saucepan. If using a food mill, just chop the pears into large chunks and add pear chunks to wine in pan.
Bring pears to a boil, cover and reduce to a simmer. Cook pears for about 15-20 minutes, or until soft, then remove from heat.
If using a food processor, let pears cool for a few minutes and puree pears and any remaining liquid until smooth. If using a food mill, set food mill over a bowl, then spoon pears and any remaining liquid into food mill. Turn crank on food mill until pears are separated from their peel, seeds and cores. Discard or compost any solids that remain in food mill.
Return pear puree to pan, add sugar and bring to a boil for approximately 10-15 minutes, stirring to dissolve sugar, until mixture is reduced by about ⅓.
While pear mixture is reducing, pour remaining ½ cup of wine (or water) into a small bowl and sprinkle with gelatin. Stir lightly to mix and then set aside so gelatin can soften.
When pear mixture has reduced, add gelatin mixture and stir until smooth. Bring mixture back to a boil, and boil for 2 minutes.
Pour mixture into prepared pan. Let cool to room temperature. Transfer to refrigerator and chill until set, about 3-4 hours.
Invert pear mixture onto a work surface (cutting board or a parchment-lined sheet) which has been sprinkled with sugar. Use a sharp knife to cut candy into small squares, or use small decorative cutters to cut candy into shapes. Store candies in layers separated by wax or parchment paper in airtight container for up to 2 weeks. You may need to dust with sugar again before serving.

Pear Cranberry Buns

1 package (13 ¾ ounces) hot roll mix
1 to 2 fresh Anjou or Bosc USA Pears
½ cup chopped fresh or frozen cranberries
½ cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Prepare hot roll mix and let rise once according to directions. Punch down and shape into 16 small balls. Flatten each slightly and place on greased cookie sheets. Cover and let rise until double. While dough is rising, core and finely chop pears to equal 1 ½ cups. Mix with cranberries, sugar, and cinnamon. Make indentation in center of each bun, leaving a ½-inch edge. Fill with pear and cranberry mixture. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown.

Pear Cranberry Bread Pudding

5 cups brioche, Hawaiian bread, or sweet rolls, torn into small pieces
2 ripe Bartlett USA Pears, peeled, cored and diced
⅓ cup dried cranberries
3 eggs
1 ½ cups whole milk
1 cup whipping cream or heavy cream
½ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
Pinch of salt

Coat the inside of a 2-quart (or larger) baking dish with cooking spray or butter and arrange the bread to cover the bottom of the dish. Layer on the pears and cranberries and top with remaining bread.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs and then blend in the milk, cream, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt using a whisk. Pour the mixture over the bread and fruit. Cover the dish and refrigerate for at least two hours or overnight to fully absorb the liquid.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Bake bread pudding for one hour, or until the custard is set. Let stand and cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Pear Butter
Spread this pear butter over sweet and savory foods, from breakfast breads to roasted chicken.

4 pounds ripe USA Pears, preferably Bartletts, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch chunks
5 cups apple cider
2 ½ cups light brown sugar
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
1 ½ teaspoons grated nutmeg
¼ teaspoon powdered cloves
2 tablespoons vanilla extract (optional)

Bring cider to boil over high heat. Cook until reduced to 2 ½ cups, or half.
Add pear chunks and cook until fruit is soft and translucent, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a food processor. Puree until mixture is smooth.
Wash original pan, or use another. Add fruit puree, brown sugar, and spices, and stir to dissolve. Bring mix to a simmer, stirring frequently to avoid scorching. Cook until very thick, 30 minutes or more.
Remove from heat, cool to room temperature. Add vanilla, if using it. (Taste at this point; you may not want to add it.)
Put pear butter into clean sterilized canning jars, seal with canning lids and rings. Process according to jar manufacturer’s directions or in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

Pear and Sour Cream Muffins with Coconut-Pecan Streusel
6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small cubes
⅓ cup all-purpose flour
⅓ cup packed brown sugar
¾ cup large flake unsweetened coconut
¾ cup pecans, lightly chopped
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter, melted
2 large eggs
½ cup honey
¾ cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 ripe USA Pears, such as Green Anjou, medium dice
1 ½ cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt

For the streusel: Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor and pulse 8 – 10 times until crumbly. Place in the refrigerator to stay cold until ready to use.
For the muffins: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 12 muffin tin with butter, or line with paper muffin cups.
In a large bowl, combine the melted butter, eggs, honey, sour cream, and vanilla and whisk to combine thoroughly. Fold the diced pears into the wet mixture. In a separate small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt, and mix to combine. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir together gently until just combined.
Spoon the batter into the muffin tin, filling each cup about ¾ of the way. Top each muffin with about 2 tablespoons of the streusel mixture, lightly pressing it down onto the batter. Cover the muffin tin loosely with foil to prevent the streusel from burning and bake for 15 minutes. Carefully remove the foil and bake an additional 12 – 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool the muffins for 15 minutes before removing from the pan.

Pear and Pumpkin Snack Cake

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-½ cups peeled, cored and diced firm, ripe USA Pears, such as Anjou or Bosc
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup brown sugar, packed
4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter cut in ½-inch pieces
¾ teaspoon salt
¾ cup pumpkin puree
⅓ cup sour cream or Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1-½ teaspoons cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
¾ teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8-inch by 8-inch baking dish.
Melt butter in a sauté pan over medium high heat. Add diced pears and sauté until they begin to brown slightly around the edges, 3 to 5 minutes. Add sugar and cinnamon and continue to cook until golden brown and lightly translucent, about 3 more minutes. Remove from heat and cool.
Combine all-purpose and whole wheat flour, brown sugar, butter, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on low speed until the mixture resembles coarse meal with butter pieces no larger than pea-sized. Measure out ⅔ cup and set aside.
Whisk pumpkin, sour cream or Greek yogurt, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, ginger, and baking soda together. Add to remaining dry mixture in mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well to incorporate.
Pour batter into pan and evenly distribute caramelized pears over the top in a single layer. Cover pears with reserved dry mixture.
Bake until golden brown and pulling away slightly from the edges of the pan, about 75 minutes or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a rack 20 minutes before running a knife around the inside edges of the pan to loosen.

Pear and Maple Breakfast Sausage

1 tablespoon canola oil, plus more for frying sausages
½ small red onion, small dice
1 pound ground pork
1 ½ tablespoons maple syrup
2 or 3 shakes of your favorite hot sauce (optional)
½ teaspoon salt
Several turns of freshly ground black pepper
1 firm-ripe USA Pear, such as Red Anjou, medium dice

Heat 1 tablespoon of canola oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Once hot, add the diced red onion and cook, stirring often, until lightly browned, about 3-5 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly. In a medium bowl, combine the pork, maple syrup, hot sauce, salt, pepper and the browned onions. Mix the ingredients together thoroughly to distribute the seasonings. Lastly, add the diced pears, mixing them in as gently as possible.

Form the mixture into 10-12 sausage patties. Lightly moistening your hands will help prevent the sausage from sticking to you. At this point, some of the sausage patties may be stored in zip-top bags and frozen.

To cook the sausage patties, fry them in a thin layer of canola oil over medium heat, about 5 minutes per side. Check the centers for doneness. If the sausages are not cooked all the way through, reduce the heat to low and cover the pan for an additional 5 minutes.

Oven Baked Pear Pancake

4 ripe USA Pears, peeled, cored and sliced
4 eggs, separated into whites and yolks
¼ cup chopped walnuts
¾ cup brown sugar, divided
⅓ cup flour
⅓ cup milk
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
Dash of salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare the pears and set aside. Combine ¼ cup brown sugar, flour, milk, egg yolks, baking powder, and dash of salt in a bowl. Mix well with a fork and set aside. Combine butter, ¼ cup brown sugar, and cinnamon in an ovenproof skillet or frying pan. Cook on stovetop until butter melts and combines with sugar. Remove from heat. Arrange the pear slices in the butter mixture in the pan and sprinkle with walnuts. Mix egg whites and remaining brown sugar in a small bowl until soft. Combine with egg yolk mixture. Pour over pear slices and bake in oven for 10 minutes until golden brown.

Northwest Pear Breakfast Cookie

1 ½ cups quick cooking oatmeal
1 cup plain granola
½ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup nonfat dry milk powder
1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided
¾ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 USA Pears, cored, cut into ¼-inch cubes
⅔ cup packed brown sugar
½ cup canola oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Mix oats, granola, whole wheat flour, flour, dry milk powder, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, salt, baking soda, and nutmeg in medium bowl; set aside.
Mix pears with remaining cinnamon; set aside.
Beat oil, brown sugar, egg, and vanilla on low speed for 1 minute until blended. Add oat mixture and beat on low 1 minute until blended. Stir in pears and raisins until just mixed.
Place ¼ cup dough on parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes until edges are set and top is golden brown. Cool 3 minutes and remove from pan.

Pork Chops with Pears and Cider

2 to 3 medium Yukon gold potatoes, sliced ½-inch thick
1 medium onion, root intact, cut in eighths
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic
5 large rosemary sprigs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 bone-in pork chops, ¾- to 1-inch thick, or 6 to 8 ounces each
2 large USA Pears, such as Bosc, Anjou, Red Anjou, or Concorde cored and cut in eighths
¾ cup pear or apple cider
½ cup vegetable stock
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. In a large bowl, toss the potatoes and onions with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, 3 whole garlic cloves, and the leaves from a sprig of rosemary. Spread the vegetables in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake 20 to 30 minutes, or until potatoes are light brown and tender when pierced with a fork.

While the potatoes and onions are in the oven, thinly slice the remaining 3 cloves of garlic. Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil, sliced garlic, and 4 rosemary sprigs over medium heat in a large cast iron skillet or other heavy-bottomed frying pan. Sauté until the garlic is lightly golden and the olive oil is infused with flavors of garlic and rosemary. Remove the garlic slices and set aside. Discard the rosemary.

Season the pork chops with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Return the skillet to the stove and heat the infused oil in pan over high heat. Arrange the chops in the pan and sear until nicely browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Turn the chops and brown on the second side, 1 to 2 minutes longer. Add the pears to the pan, lower the heat, and continue cooking until pears become tender and lightly brown and the chops cooked through, about 10 minutes. Remove the chops and pears from the pan and pour all but 1 tablespoon of oil from the pan.

Pour the cider in the pan and reduce by half over medium high heat, continuously scraping the bottom of the pan to remove any browned bits. Add the stock and reduce by half again. Add the butter, stirring until melted, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Return the pears to the pan.

To serve, place a chop on each of four plates, next to some roasted potatoes and onions. Spoon the pan sauce and several wedges of pear over each chop. Garnish with fresh rosemary leaves if desired.

Poached Pears with Vanilla Caramel Sauce and Toasted Peanuts

Poached Pears
¾ cup sugar
1 (750 ml) bottle dry white wine
1 cinnamon stick
2 tablespoons black peppercorns
1 1-inch wide piece lemon zest
6 USA Pears, such as Bosc, Concorde, or Anjou, with stems
1 cup peanuts, toasted and chopped

Vanilla Caramel Sauce
1 cup sugar
½ cup water
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
¾ cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla

For pears: Place sugar, wine, cinnamon stick, peppercorns, and lemon zest in a small deep pan and bring slowly to a boil. Meanwhile, peel pears, leaving stems and scooping out flower ends with a melon baller. Immediately immerse pears in syrup, standing upright if possible.

Set a small heatproof plate on top to keep them completely immersed in syrup. Bring just to a boil then reduce to simmer. Cook until pears are tender when pierced with a knife, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from the syrup. Reserve syrup for another use. Divide the pears among 6 plates.

Drizzle with Vanilla Caramel Sauce and sprinkle over toasted peanuts. Serve immediately.

For sauce: In a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat sugar, water, and lemon juice, over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Bring the syrup to a boil, and continue to boil without stirring until it begins to turn golden around the edges. (It is important not to stir, as the syrup may crystallize.)

Meanwhile, combine butter and heavy cream in a small saucepan. Heat until the butter melts. When the syrup begins to color, lower the heat, and continue boiling to a deep-golden color. It will darken rapidly. Remove the pan from the heat, and let it cool for 30 seconds. Add the butter and cream, being careful as the syrup will bubble up in the pan.

Place pan back over heat, stirring until the caramel is completely dissolved. Add vanilla and stir to combine. Serve warm or at room temperature. Store the sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 month; it will solidify. Reheat it over a double boiler or in a heavy saucepan over very low heat, adding a bit of warm water if it is too thick.

Pear Bread with Brown Butter and Cardamom

¾ cup butter (1 ½ sticks)
⅔ cup packed light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 ripe USA Pears, such as Anjou or Bartlett
1 ⅔ cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon cardamom
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt

Place the butter into a saucepan over medium-low heat. Once the butter begins to sizzle, cook for 5 – 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the butter has taken on a golden brown color and smells nutty. Remove the pan from the heat and set the brown butter aside to cool slightly.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a loaf pan by greasing it with butter and dusting it with flour. In a medium bowl, combine the brown butter and sugar and stir well to thoroughly combine. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix. Grate the pears on the large holes of a box grater and add them to the wet ingredients as well.

In a second small bowl, combine the flour, cardamom, baking powder, and salt and whisk to combine. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and fold together gently just until the flour is moistened – do not over-mix.

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake the pear bread for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Allow the bread to cool for 30 minutes before removing from the pan.

Northwest Pear Tartlets

30 frozen mini phyllo shells
½ cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped
4 ounces Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
1 Red Anjou USA Pear, cored and diced

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place mini phyllo shells on baking sheet. In medium sized mixing bowl combine hazelnuts, cheese, and pears. Fill shells with pear mixture.

Bake for 15 minutes or until cheese is hot and starting to bubble. Serve warm.

Lacy Pear Coffee Cake
This pretty pear cake is also versatile—you can frost the bottom layer and stack the second for a bigger cake, or cut each layer into slices or squares. The layers can be wrapped in freezer paper or foil and frozen for up to 2 months. Thaw them at room temperature and dust with powdered sugar before serving.

1 ¾ cups flour
1 ½ cups packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¾ cup shortening
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ½ cups USA Pears, finely chopped
½ cup chopped blanched almonds
Powdered sugar
Whipped cream or topping (optional)

In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except pears, almonds, powdered sugar and whipped cream. Beat 3 minutes at medium speed; scrape bowl as needed. Stir in pears and almonds. Pour into 2 greased and floured 8-inch round pans.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35–40 minutes or until wooden toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes; turn onto wire rack. Cool completely. Place a lacy paper doily on each cake layer. Dust with powdered sugar; carefully remove doily. Serve cake with whipped cream, if desired.
yield: Makes 2 layers or 8 to 12 servings

Individual Pear Crisps

4 whole Bartlett USA Pears
⅔ cup flour
½ cup oats
⅓ cups brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
6 tablespoons butter, cubed and chilled

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
On a cutting board, slice pears in half. To ensure that the pears lay flat while baking, slice off a small piece on the outside of each pear. The middle of the pear should be facing up. With a melon baller or spoon, scoop out the seeds of the pears. Place pears onto a baking sheet or in the bottom of pie dishes. In a medium bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients. With a pastry cutter, cut in butter until crumbles develop.
Top pear halves with crumbles.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until crumbles turn golden brown on top. Serve while warm. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, if you’re feeling daring.

Green Anjou Meringue Pie
It’s best to make the meringue just before you’re ready to serve the pie. If it’s made several hours ahead, the meringue will droop.

⅔ cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
⅓ cup milk
2 egg yolks, beaten
1 teaspoon lemon peel, grated
4 Green Anjou USA Pears, peeled, cored, and sliced
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 unbaked pie crust
3 egg whites
¼ teaspoon vanilla
6 tablespoons sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Beat sugar with flour, milk, egg yolks, and lemon peel until smooth. Toss pear slices with lemon juice in a large bowl. Add milk mixture and mix until pears are well coated. Pour into pie crust, cover the edges with foil, and bake for 20 minutes or until pears are tender.

In a medium bowl, beat egg whites with vanilla using an electric beater on medium speed until foamy. Gradually add sugar, one tablespoon at a time. Beat on high speed after each addition until sugar is completely dissolved. Spread meringue mixture over pear filling in pie and bake inside oven at 350 degrees until top is golden brown. Set pie aside to cool.

German Pancake with Caramelized Pears

4 eggs
1 cup whole milk
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon salt
3 Anjou (Red or Green) USA Pears, peeled, cored, and sliced, about 3 cups
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
¼ cup sugar
Powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs then add the milk, flour, vanilla, and salt. Continue whisking until batter is smooth.

Melt the butter in a cast iron or ovenproof 10-inch skillet. Add the pears and cinnamon and cook, stirring gently, until the pears begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the sugar and cook over medium heat, stirring, for 3 minutes. Pears will still be somewhat firm.

Pour the batter evenly over the top of the pears. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the edge of the pancake begins to turn brown and puffs, about 15 minutes.

Remove the skillet from the oven and sift powdered sugar on top using a sifter or fine mesh strainer. Slice into quarters and serve immediately.

Fresh Anjou Pear Tart

3 ounces almond paste
⅓ cup granulated sugar
½ cup butter, softened to room temperature
2 eggs
¾ cup hazelnuts, roasted and ground
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 prepared 9-inch tart shell
½ cup chocolate, melted
4 firm, ripe Anjou USA Pears, peeled, cored, and sliced about ¼-inch thick
1 lemon, juiced
4 ounces apricot preserves, melted and strained

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For filling, cream together almond paste and sugar. Add butter and mix until smooth. Add eggs, mixing well after each addition. Add ground hazelnuts and vanilla and mix. Brush melted chocolate on bottom of prepared tart shell and pour in filling. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until filling is lightly browned and set in the center.

Cool tart on rack. When the tart is cooled, toss pear slices gently with lemon juice to keep them from turning brown. Arrange pear slices in concentric circles. Brush completed tart with strained apricot preserves.

Forelles Baked in Pastry
This dessert is easier than it looks using prepared pie crust. The smaller Forelle pear works well in this elegant dessert presentation.

6 firm, ripe Forelle USA Pears
1 cup diced dates or dried apricots
½ cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pastry dough for double crust pie, unbaked
1 egg
2 tablespoons milk
¾ cup sour cream
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ cup raspberry or strawberry syrup

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Core pears, leaving stem intact. Mix dates (or dried fruits), brown sugar, and cinnamon. Fill cavity of pears with fruit mixture. Roll out pie crust (or use prepared crust). Cut 2 strips of pastry, 2 inches wide by 8 inches long, for each pear. Cut the end of each strip so it tapers to a point. For each pear, lay two strips of dough together in the shape of a cross. Moisten center of bottom strip with water before placing other piece on top. Place filled pear in center of cross. Brush edges of dough with enough water to moisten. Gently fold dough up the sides of pear, and pinch edges together. Repeat with other edges and pinch tops together to seal pears completely. Beat egg and milk together. Brush dough surface with mix.

Bake on cookie sheet at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on rack. Mix sour cream, sugar, and vanilla. Place ⅙ of mixture on each dessert plate; dot with berry syrup. Swirl pattern with knife point. Place pears on plate and serve.

Double Delight Pear Waffles

1 ¾ cup unbleached flour
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
1 ¾ cups buttermilk
½ cup unsalted melted butter
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs, separated
½ cup chopped, peeled USA Pears
3 USA Pears, peeled and sliced
½ cup pure maple syrup
¼ cup orange marmalade

Preheat waffle iron on medium high heat. Preheat oven to 200 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and nutmeg. In another bowl, whisk together buttermilk, butter, sugar, vanilla, and egg yolks. Slowly whisk the flour mixture into the buttermilk mixture.

In the bowl of a standing mixer, whip egg whites until stiff. Fold 1 cup of egg whites and chopped pears into buttermilk-flour mixture. Fold in remaining egg whites.

Pour about ⅓ cup of batter into each well of the waffle iron and close the lid. Cook the waffle until golden brown and crisp, about 5 minutes. Keep warm in oven and continue to bake remaining waffle batter.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan over medium heat, combine sliced pears, marmalade, and maple syrup. Heat until thoroughly warmed.

Crispy Pork Cutlets with Fresh Pear Sauce
“This recipe was inspired by two classic dishes: Schnitzel, the crispy, thinly pounded cutlets so popular in Germany, and the classic all-American combination of pork, applesauce (or in this case, pear sauce), and sour cream. This recipe makes for a delicious and warming winter dinner, and it’s perfect served with a simple steamed or roasted vegetable - I highly recommend Brussels sprouts.”

Pear Sauce
3 ripe USA Pears, such as Red Bartlett, Anjou, or Comice
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt

4 pork cutlets, 4-5 ounces each
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup flour
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup breadcrumbs
Equal parts butter and olive oil for frying

For the pear sauce: Roughly chop two of the pears and place them into a saucepan over medium low heat. Add the sugar, vinegar, cinnamon, and salt, and cover. Cook for 5-10 minutes, or until the pears have released a lot of their liquid. Once the mixture is liquidy, uncover and increase the heat to medium high. Simmer for another 5-10 minutes, stirring often, until the mixture has thickened. Lastly, dice the remaining pear and gently stir it into the sauce. Set aside, covered, until ready to use.

For the pork: Place the pork cutlets between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound them until they are ⅛-inch thick. If you don’t have a proper meat pounder, a rolling pin or an empty wine bottle will do. Once the cutlets are nice and thin, season them lightly on both sides with salt and pepper and set aside. Next, place flour, beaten eggs, and breadcrumbs into three separate containers large enough to dip the cutlets into. To bread the cutlets, first dip in the flour, coating as evenly as possible and shaking off any excess. Then dip the floured cutlet into the egg mixture, coating both sides, and lastly into the breadcrumbs, which will stick easily to the egg. Place the cutlets aside while you prepare for frying.

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Heat a wide sauté pan over medium heat. Once hot, add approximately equal parts butter and olive oil—just enough to coat the bottom of the pan to a depth of ⅛-inch. Fry the cutlets in the hot fat one at a time, for about 2-3 minutes per side or until golden brown. As the finished cutlets come out of the pan, transfer them to the warm oven while you cook the others. You will need to add a bit more butter and oil between each cutlet.

Sprinkle the cooked cutlets with a little more salt to finish and serve with the warm, fresh pear sauce and a spoonful of sour cream.

Chicken and Pear Burger

1 boneless, skinless chicken breast, pounded flat (or ground chicken or turkey)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 slice Swiss cheese
1 Bartlett USA Pear, cored and cut into ¼-inch slices


Preheat your gas or pellet grill on high for at least 15 minutes. If using a charcoal grill, wait until the briquettes ash over.

Season chicken breast with salt and pepper on both sides. Grill chicken breast until done, turning once, about 8 minutes per side.

After turning the chicken breast over, place cheese slice on top during the last 4 minutes of cooking. Just before removing chicken breast from the grill, grill the pear slice, about 2 minutes per side.

Place chicken breast on your favorite Franz bun, add pear slice and condiments. Enjoy!

Cheddar Pear Scones
These crumbly buttery scones studded with tender pears are a beguiling sweet and savory breakfast treat. Best served immediately or gently reheated the next day.

1 peeled, cored and diced Bartlett or Green Anjou USA Pear, about ¾ cup
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup sugar
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
½ cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, preferably white
2 tablespoons whole milk
1 large egg

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Place the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl and stir to combine. Add the butter and blend using a pastry blender or two butter knives. Add the cheese, milk, and egg and stir until the dough begins to come together, then add the pears.

Generously flour working surface and place the dough on top. Sprinkle the dough with flour and pat into a 7-inch circle. Cut circle into 6 wedges. Transfer wedges to a non-stick or parchment paper lined baking sheet. Allow at least 2 inches between each scone. Bake until firm and golden, about 25 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool before serving.

Caramel Pear Galette
Easier than pie! This free form fruit tart is terrific with vanilla ice cream or a dollop of crème fraiche.

1 refrigerated pie crust (9-inch)
3 tablespoons of caramel sauce, divided
3 ripe Red or Green Anjou USA Pears
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons milk
1 teaspoon granulated or turbinado sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Bring pie crust to room temperature as directed on package. Unroll the pie crust on a non-stick or parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Spread one tablespoon of caramel topping on the crust, leaving a 1 ½-inch border.

Peel, quarter and core the pears. Slice each quarter lengthwise into 4 even slices. Place pear slices in a bowl and toss with cinnamon and flour. Starting in the center, arrange the slices on the dough in a spoke pattern, in overlapping layers as necessary to fit and leaving a 1 ½-inch border. Drizzle the pear slices with 1 tablespoon of caramel topping. Fold the edge of the crust over the tart. Brush the top of the crust with milk and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake 30 minutes or until crust is lightly brown. Let galette cool 10 minutes. Drizzle top of the fruit with the remaining tablespoon of caramel topping before serving.

Canned Pear Halves

1 lemon, juiced
3 quarts water, divided
6 pounds Bartlett USA Pears, peeled, halved, and cored
2 cups sugar

Mix lemon juice and 2 quarts water in a large bowl. As you prepare each pear half, you’ll place it in this water to keep it from browning. Trim the stem ends of pear halves and discard them. Place pears into bowl of lemon water. Prepare the syrup by combining remaining quart of water and the sugar in a large (5 or 6 quart) pot. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears from the lemon water to the boiling syrup. Return to a boil and cook pears in syrup for 2 minutes. Using a canning funnel, pack pears into wide-mouth pint-size jars. When all jars are full, pour the remaining syrup over the pears to cover them, leaving ¼-inch headspace in jars. Wipe the rims of the jars spotlessly clean. Look for any air bubbles and pop them with a plastic knife. Set lids on jars, and screw bands on finger-tight. Process jars in boiling water bath for 20 minutes. Remove jars from kettle using jar-lifter tongs and gently set aside to cool on a kitchen towel in a draft-free place. Let rest for 24 hours, then check for proper seal before storing.

Brown Sugar Pear Butter
“Use golden ripe Bartlett pears for this recipe, not green ones. This is the perfect opportunity to use up pears that might be getting a bit soft. This rich and complex pear butter recipe is perfect for spreading on toast, but also great with whipped cream cheese on a bagel, or in recipes, like layering it in the middle of oat bars or to top off jam thumbprint-type cookies.”

3 pounds perfectly ripe Bartlett USA Pears (about 5 large pears)
¼ cup water
1-2 cups brown sugar
½ vanilla bean (or ½ teaspoon vanilla extract)
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
⅛ teaspoon ground cloves

Wash, then quarter and core pears, placing them in a heavy-bottom preserving pan as you work. Add water. Do not add more liquid, the pears will create liquid as they cook!

Bring to a simmer over low heat, then cover tightly with a lid to keep heat and moisture in. Simmer for approximately 20 minutes, or until pears have softened, then remove pan from heat. Mash pears with a potato masher until they are mushy (approximately 15-30 seconds).

Place food mill over a bowl, then scoop pear mush into the food mill. Crank away until all that remains in the food mill is a small amount of pear skins/peels. Discard or compost the skins. Measure the pear puree back into the preserving pan, keeping track of the amount of pear puree you end up with; you’ll want to add half that much brown sugar to the pear puree mixture. (For example, for 2 cups of pear puree, you’ll add 1 cup of brown sugar.)

Add one 2-3-inch piece of vanilla bean. Add the remaining spices into the pear puree mixture. Stir well to combine. Cook approximately one hour over low heat, simmering constantly. It will be more of a burble than a simmer, because of the thickening nature of the pear butter.

Once desired thickness has been achieved, remove the preserving pan from the heat and remove the vanilla bean, then spoon mixture immediately into hot sterilized jars, leaving ¼-inch headspace.

Note: If you are using vanilla extract instead of a vanilla bean, add it at the end of the cooking process, when you would normally be removing the vanilla bean.

At this point you can either cover jars with tight-fitting lids (and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 months, or in the freezer for up to 6 months) or you can process by following the next steps:

Look for any air bubbles in the jars and if you see any, use a knife to remove them before wiping rims clean and sealing according to USDA instructions. Process for 10 minutes in a boiling water bath.

yield: Makes approximately 3 half pints

Bread Stuffing with Pears Bacon Caramelized Onions

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
10 cups unseasoned dry bread cubes
8 ounces bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 ¼ pounds frozen pearl onions, thawed and blotted dry
1 tablespoon golden brown sugar
3 firm but ripe Bosc or Anjou USA Pears, peeled, halved lengthwise, cored, and cut into ¾-inch dice
3 large ribs celery, chopped
2/3 cup minced fresh parsley
1 ½ tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
1 ½ tablespoons minced fresh sage
1 ½ teaspoons salt
Freshly ground pepper
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
4 cups canned low-sodium chicken broth

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a deep 9-by-13-inch baking pan with the butter. Place the bread cubes in a very large mixing bowl. In a 10-inch saute pan, cook the bacon over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon drain the bacon and add to the bread in the bowl. Remove all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat from the pan, reserving the extra. Add the onions to the pan and saute over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until soft and lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle the sugar over the onions and saute, stirring constantly, until the onions turn golden and the edges caramelize, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add to the bread in the bowl.

Return the pan to medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of the reserved bacon fat and swirl to coat the pan. Add the pears and celery and saute, stirring frequently, until softened, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the parsley, thyme, sage, salt, and a few grinds of pepper, and saute 1 minute longer. Add this mixture to the bread cubes, and stir to combine. Add the beaten eggs and stock to the bowl, and mix well. Place the stuffing in the prepared pan and bake, uncovered, until the top is lightly browned and crusty, about 1 hour.
yield: Serves 12

Bosc Pear Lasagna with Almonds and Brie

4 Bosc USA Pears, peeled, cored, and cut into ½-inch pieces
2 tablespoons ground anise, divided
4 cups white cream sauce
12 uncooked lasagna sheets
2 pounds ricotta cheese
6 eggs
1 pound Brie cheese, divided
2 ¼ ounces toasted sliced almonds
Salt and white pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine 1 tablespoon anise and ½ pound of Brie with cream sauce. Mix ricotta, eggs, remaining anise, and remaining brie. Season to taste. Combine pears with ricotta mixture.

Ladle 4 ounces of cream sauce into the bottom of a 9 x 11-inch baking pan. Layer the pan with 4 uncooked lasagna sheets. Top the lasagna with half of the pear and ricotta mixture. Top the pear and ricotta mixture with a third of the sliced almonds. Ladle 8 ounces of cream sauce on top of almonds.

Create a second layer of lasagna, alternating lasagna noodles, pear mixture, almonds, and cream sauce. Layer top of lasagna with final 4 sheets of pasta. Cover with remaining cream sauce (make sure all pasta sheets are covered with sauce). Cover baking dish with lid or aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.

Top lasagna with remaining almonds and bake an additional 15 minutes. Let lasagna cool for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

Bacon and Blue Cheese Sliders with Pear Ketchup

Pear Ketchup
2 Anjou USA Pears
2 teaspoons clarified butter or vegetable oil
¼ cup diced sweet onion, like Walla Walla or Vidalia
1 cup clear apple juice or cider
2 to 4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
⅛ teaspoon white pepper
Kosher salt to taste
12 slices thick-cut bacon, well-chilled or frozen
3 tablespoons crumbled blue cheese
4 small soft rolls, preferably brioche

To make the pear ketchup, peel and core the pears and cut them into large cubes. Warm the clarified butter or oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until they become translucent. Add the pears and stir to coat with the butter or oil. Add the apple cider and cook over low heat until the liquid is almost completely absorbed. Set aside to cool.

Puree the mixture until completely smooth, and then add 2 tablespoons of vinegar and taste. The ketchup should be tangy, to help balance the fattiness of the bacon and cheese. Add the white pepper and salt to taste.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

To make the sliders, use a food processor to chop the bacon. Keep the slices together and cut the bacon slab into several large chunks. Refrigerate or freeze the chunks until very firm. This will help keep the grind uniform, like ground beef, not mushy. Crumble the blue cheese into the ground bacon and form the mixture into eight 2-inch patties.

Place the patties on a baking sheet or cast iron skillet and cook for 10 minutes. Turn the burgers over and cook another 10 to 15 minutes or until the internal temperature is 170 degrees.

To serve, split the roll, toast if desired and spread one side with the ketchup.

yield: Makes eight sliders

Anjou Pear and Red Potato Gratin
This savory pairing of Pacific Northwest potatoes and pears by renowned Northwest chef Leif Benson makes a great side dish for roast pork or barbecued chicken. For a reduced fat approach, substitute chicken stock for half the cream.

2 pounds Anjou USA Pears, cored
2 pounds Northwest-grown red potatoes
2 teaspoons salt, to taste
½ teaspoon white pepper
½ teaspoon oregano
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup Gruyère cheese, grated
½ cup Rogue Creamery Oregonzola or Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

Thinly slice pears into rings using a mandoline or knife. Slice potatoes to the same thickness as pears.

In a saucepan, mix seasonings together with cream and carefully bring to a brief boil.

Layer a third of the potato and pear slices in the bottom of a 10 x 2 round baking dish, alternating pears and potatoes. Sprinkle ⅓ of the Gruyere and Oregonzola on potatoes and pears. Repeat layers until complete. Pour cream sauce atop.

Cover baking dish with foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until tender. Remove foil and bake until golden brown and bubbly. Let rest 15 minutes before serving.

Pear Bread (Switzerland)

2 cups scalded milk
3 cups granulated sugar
4 teaspoons salt
1 cup fat
2 cups water
3 packages active dry yeast
1 cup lukewarm water
3 pounds raisins
2 pounds dried pears
2 pounds currants
1 to 2 tablespoons anise powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon

Combine scalded milk, sugar, salt, fat and water. Cool to lukewarm. Soften yeast in the lukewarm water. Stir in the yeast and enough flour to make a sponge dough. Add the fruit and enough flour to make a dough that will not stick to the board. Put into a bowl and let rise until double.
Shape into loaves and let rise again until double. Bake at 225 degrees F about 2 hours.